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spraying water vs. ignoring

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Squeaky has started meowing outside our door at night again. We'll have been sleeping for 3 or 4 hours, and she'll start meowing. She has enough food, fresh water, I scoop her litter box every morning, and I play with her/spend time with her for the hour or so before bedtime. I'm thinking she's just lonely, but really, we can't keep getting woken up at night, and she can't come in the bedroom because of my asthma.

So I've been doing my research, and I've found some ideas. I'm going to get an activity food toy, where she rolls it around and food pops out. I'm also going to see about the cat dancer that sticks to the wall.

But where I'm at a loss is how to respond. Is it better to ignore, or to spray water? I have the squirt bottle next to the door, and I'm thinking if she starts meowing, I'll open the door a crack and squirt her. But then, even negative attention is attention, and it might keep her going. If we ignore her, do you think it will stop? It's a really busy time at work for my husband and I, lots of long long hours and we need every minute of sleep we can get.
post #2 of 8
Poor furbaby.

Poor tired people.

Don't do the spray bottle thing if you can help it - I started that, but the pathetic looks I got made me quit, I felt soooo guilty, and I think I read somewhere in this forum that using a spray bottle isn't the best solution ??

Sounds like both you and your husband are gone a lot, and you have a cat that is craving for company.

Sad about the asthma thing keeping her from being cuddled at night. It's such a treasure to be walked on at night, for them to lay on your legs so you can't move, for them to walk on the radio alarm and turn it on for you - really, you are missing a lot by not having her in there with you - especially the purrs you get when she's snuggled up to you ... I could continue, but I won't contribute more to your trouble.

The only thing I can think of is - another cat - to keep her company on the long days, and lonely nights - I hope others can come up with suggestions that would work for you - like, how about ear plugs?

We got two more cats for our KiKi (not on purpose exactly, but a great excuse) - he is such a lover, and he needed more attention than we could give him. He wanted to play hide and seek, but, really there's only so much an adult can chase and hide.

If you double click on the photo in the lower right, you'll be able to see KiKi cuddled up with Phoebe - the additional cats made a difference - but, KiKi still requires a lot of carrying around, and cuddles during the day - at least I don't have to run and hide as much now.

I truly hope some folks here will be able to give you ideas and solutions.
G
post #3 of 8
I wouldn't do the spray - at best, she'll think she's being punished for talking, and at worst, as you said, negative attention is still attention. I think you said in another post you can't get another kitty (and my Dharma talks at night, even though I do have a second kitty), but I have noticed if I just pretend to totally not be aware of her, she learned not to 'chat' at 3:00 am. However, if she hears me turn over, I'm fair game. She is just lonely and loving and wants her parents.....

Umm, when does she get dinner - I wonder if you start pushing her last meal (or last gushy food) to just before bedtime, if she'd sleep through the night.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 
Yeah, no second kitty until we move into a new apartment, unfortunately. I went to a cat show this weekend, and I've been talking up a few different breeds I like with the husband. It took me 3 years to wear him down to get just one cat, so I'm hoping I can wear him down to get a second in less time

The husband has taken over feeding duties, so I'll see about getting him to push it back. I think we usually feed her at night around 8, so it wouldn't be that much longer to wait.

Yesterday, I tried the ignoring tactic - didn't respond when she meowed at any time during the day, and then when she was quiet, I would pick her up and play with her. Did the same thing this morning. She didn't meow at our door last night, so hopefully this tactic will work.

I really do hope work slows down. It's been nice getting the overtime, but getting home late and having to work weekends reduces my kitty lovin time
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by darlili View Post
I wouldn't do the spray - at best, she'll think she's being punished for talking, and at worst, as you said, negative attention is still attention. I think you said in another post you can't get another kitty (and my Dharma talks at night, even though I do have a second kitty), but I have noticed if I just pretend to totally not be aware of her, she learned not to 'chat' at 3:00 am. However, if she hears me turn over, I'm fair game. She is just lonely and loving and wants her parents.....

Umm, when does she get dinner - I wonder if you start pushing her last meal (or last gushy food) to just before bedtime, if she'd sleep through the night.
That's a great idea - wish I'd thought about it! At least eating would keep her busy until you guys can get into your "rem" sleep (I think that's how you spell it?) ... then you may not hear her enough for it to trouble you.

We have one cat (a Calico) that has a "toy" - it's a large yarn pom-pom - she must think it's special, either a baby kitty, or a mouse ??, anyway, she wakes us up with a yowling sound when she has it - every time I've rushed to see if she's okay - there's that toy in her mouth!

Hope the new feeding schedule works - after mine eat, they groom, then find a "nest" and sleep for hours.

Another thing - what sort of "bed" do you have for her? Is it by your bedroom door? Mine enjoy boxes with about 3" sides, and padded with an old throw rug - they have an edge to lean on while grooming, and they seem to like to have something to prop their head on when they're asleep ???.
g
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Squeaky is um, odd, when it comes to sleeping She completely ignores her fluffy cat bed, and will occasionally use boxes, but most of the time, she's either in her carrier or sprawled out on the couch or floor.



post #7 of 8
During the period in which yowling was a real problem for my little cat, we used spray. Different situation, though- she has eight zillion toys and a cat friend and a people sized bed to sleep on, and the meowing was totally deliberate on her part (she's a devious little thing, bless her). It nipped the problem in the bud without scaring her off from her normal chattiness during the daytime.
post #8 of 8
Isn't that just like a cat - ignoring a wonderful cat bed for other "pleasures" ...

I just started making my own toys - they mostly ignore the store-bought toys. Using cardboard boxes for beds seems to work best - at least I can just pitch out an old box when it's "done".

Carrier: yes, my KiKi loves his carrier, too - I have two carriers, stacked on top of each other, and held together with "bungie" cords - he prefers the one on top, and that's where I see him a lot of the time.

There is something about the pile on a rug that draws my cats - even the ferals that sleep outside - boxes and old bathroom throw rugs are favored for reasons unknown to me - I just go with what works, like you do with Squeaky.
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